Poverty

Wealth and the working poor - you'd have to work 703 years to earn what O'Reilly takes

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Roughly over one hundred thousand workers in Ireland are currently working on the minimum wage-thats 9.15 an hour or under 400 euro a week,working 40 hours a week. Around 90% of those on social welfare payment and out of work earn less than they would in work. The old proclamations of our leaders that 'were all middle class now' and the lies spread about those on social welfare are shown to be what they actually are from these facts. They are mere propaganda slogans aimed at convincing us that we live in a more or less equal society and that we should keep quiet about the enormous wealth of corporations and business owners.

Global inequality is escalating rapidly - let’s end concentrations of wealth and power, completely

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Oxfam has just released a report that shows global inequality has escalated rapidly over the last 6 years.  The particular measure they used is a very important one.  First they calculated the wealth held by the poorest 50% of the planets population, which is about 3.6 billion people. And then they asked how many of the richest people held the same amount of wealth.

London burns - causes & consequences of the riots - an anarchist perspective

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The police killing of Mark Duggan resulted in four nights of rioting across England. The immediate trigger was the killing itself, and the disrespect shown by the police to Mark’s family and friends. But the riots rapidly broadened to expressions of a more general anger and alienation; an anger that was all too often unfocused and striking out at the nearest target of opportunity. This resulted in widespread destruction of resources in already deprived neighborhoods and some anti-social attacks on bystanders. Despite this, the roots of the riots lie in the economic and political conditions of these districts, and not in ‘poor parenting’ or ‘mindless criminality’. These conditions were created by the very politicians and business elite who now call for a return to normality and repression. [French translation]

(Image: By SkyFireXII via Flickr Creative Commons 2.0)

Homelessness & Prostitution - Legalisation not criminalisation

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The sex industry is expanding and is said to gross millions of pounds per annum. Over the last year this has been reflected in the increasing focus in the media on prostitution. In October, a brothel keeper was arrested and charged. In November, Young Fine Gael passed a motion supporting the legalisation of prostitution. It is now a popular topic on the late night chat shows on tabloid radio stations.This summer, an inevitable tragedy happened. As a result of having to work unprotected on the street Sinead Kelly, a young Dublin prostitute, was murdered as she worked. Politicians and high-ranking cops shed crocodile tears for the cameras. Few of them pointed out that it was their stringent laws that made Sinead Kelly an easy target.

750,000 live under poverty line in Southern Ireland

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A new report from Social Justice Ireland has shown that the economic crisis has pushed 100,000 more people under the poverty line in the south of Ireland, with a total of 750,000 people. That's about 15% of people.

The background image is of a house on Dublin's illustrious Shrewsbury Road (the top property in Monopoly).

Linking child benefit to school attendance?

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One of our dear leaders is set on a plan to link child benefit to school attendance of the children in question. Minister Denis Naughton believes he has strong support for the plan--although many, including some in government are reportedly balking at the idea (although most likely not for any reasons related to humanity or decency). They probably fear a public backlash or loss in support.

Although the plans are not definite they give an insight into the minds which make up our government.

Stormont Gives The Tories The Power To Destroy Our Welfare System

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It's no secret that Stormont has gone into one of its regular crises.

A few months ago they were arguing over Welfare Reform, then Kevin McGuigan was shot dead and they were then arguing about whether or not the IRA still existed (great timing for Robinson as the NAMA scandal was just being brought to light).

Class War: Household Charges to Rise as Millionaires Multiply by 40% in 5 Years

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Recent studies in the North have shown that the rich really are getting richer while the poor are getting poorer.

It is no secret that household charges are set to rise due to ongoing “austerity” measures by Capitalist governments.

Today, research from PwC (PricewaterhouseCoopers accountancy firm) indicated that households in the North will be hit hardest in the UK by this rise in charges.
 

Taoiseach Enda Kenny, Thinks Own Government’s Policies may be ‘Morally wrong’ – Vows to Continue

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Speaking at the launch of the government’s Low Pay Commission, Kenny said that “It is morally unacceptable for families with people in work to be experiencing poverty”. He did not however announce the abolition of the water charge, the property tax or that the bondholders would not be paid back in order to address this problem. Neither did he, nor Joan Burton, who accompanied him at the launch announce the end of the Jobbridge indentured servitude scheme, where unemployed people get fifty euro for a full week’s work.

Neither was there an announcement that clerical workers in public services would see an end of the pension levies and the universal social charge that have driven so many to the point where they were forced to claim family income supplement.

It is also noteworthy that Enda only thinks it’s morally wrong for those in paid employment to experience poverty, and it is quite clear from looking at government policy over the last four years, that this is the consensus amongst the cabinet. You only have value if you are making a profit for someone else or if you are working to ensure the cogs of government keep turning – though, not that much value.

 

Global 1% to Own 50% of Wealth by 2016 - Enough Is Enough

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There is something fundamentally wrong with this system when 80 people can have the same amount of wealth as what 3.6 billion people have between them. The figures from Oxfam’s latest report show that the rich really are getting richer and that the poor are getting poorer.

There are many factors we can attribute to this trend; globalization, out-sourcing, the breaking of labour power through the breaking of the unions in the Reagan-Thatcher era that labour never recovered from. Ultimately it falls down to the growing strength of capitalism and therefore the growing strength of the other harmful power structures that it has to support it. Included in these is racism, cheap labour from immigrants or as in many cases slave labour, as well as sexism, with gender being the division of labour. Both of these things, racism and sexism (to name only a few) come from policies implemented at the top of society that are targeted at the rest of us.
 

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